And now for something totally different.

Probably on topic but not necessarily woodworking.
Sketchup
For those of you that use Sketchup I have a cool trick for you to try out. I use it on occasion and it is very beneficial. I think that Swingman and have discussed using this trick but I don't think either of us have shared this.
ANYWAY....
When I design a piece of furniture I typically will place the drawing inside a scale model drawing of the room that it is going to go in to. I am currently designing an entertainment center to fit inside our "entertainment nook" The nook is approximately 22" deep, 98" wide, 88" tall on the sides, and then on top of the sides is an arch that reaches 96" tall. I am filling the void basically.
I am going to run a sheet of 1/2" walnut plywood, ripped in half, vertically on the back wall of the nook. A walnut cabinet will set below and will be as wide as the nook and be about 32" tall. The walnut panels will be offset from the back wall 3/4" so that they will appear to be floating. There will be a 2" gap between the two panels and at the ends of each panel and the behind exposed wall will be painted flat black. In the center of the panels will hang a big screen TV.
Because all of this fits close to the back wall but not against the wall and almost fills the wall, the details of the TV mounting bracket, hanger strips for the panels, etc. are difficult to see when located in the model drawing of the nook.
Now the trick. I want to see how the whole thing will look before building so I color all the parts of the drawing including the walls the correct color. From outside the nook area you cannot see into the nook, the wall color is opaque. This however blocks the very narrow view of how things are fitting behind the TV and the floating panels. So to be able to see through the walls of the nook from the out side of the nook I change the outer side of the walls to a transparent color/material. The inside side of the nook walls remain opaque. In effect this creates a one way view through the wall, you can see in but cannot see out depending on which side you are viewing the wall.
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wrote:

As Artie Johnson used to say on "Laugh In," "Very Interesting."
I don't use Sketchup but I do use Pro-Engineer. I'll have to give it a try.
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On Tue, 27 Aug 2013 17:37:51 -0500, Gordon Shumway

I finally got around to giving your idea a try in Pro-E and it works just like you described it. Thanks for the tip.
Can you "hide" parts in sketchup? I can select one or many parts to "hide" and that just removes them from view temporarily. That accomplishes the same goal as making one side of a part transparent, so you can see through it, but with a lot less work.
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On 9/1/2013 11:16 AM, Gordon Shumway wrote:

Yep ... using the "Hide" function in SU, in conjunction with the "Scenes" function, is extremely handy for shop drawings and client presentations.
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On 9/1/2013 11:16 AM, Gordon Shumway wrote:

Absolutely and you can still see the outline of the hidden object if yu have hidden geometry turned on.
In my case I wanted a wall to be opaque on one side and see through on the other.
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wrote:

It appears that either program can do both of those tasks. The reason I use Pro-Engineer is that's what I was using at work before I retired. The learning curve was much easier that way.
Later.
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On 9/1/2013 3:55 PM, Gordon Shumway wrote:

Absolutely! You use what you are familiar with. I originally used IMSI Designer back in the 80's, then TurboCAD then KeyCAD, then several versions of Auto Sketch, then several versions of AutoCAD. after about 4 AutoCAD upgrades I needed a less expensive alternative. Google's free Sketchup could not have come at a better time. Even the Pro version at $600 is a deal compared to upgrading AutoCAD.
FWIW Sketchup was easier for me to learn than any of the previous programs. It seems to do everything that I did with other programs with fewer steps.
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